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Christmas shoppers and presents a target for festive theft

ABI issues a warning and tips to avoid falling victim to burglars and pickpockets

Christmas presents

The Association of British Insurers (ABI) is urging people to be extra vigilant during the festive season, to avoid falling victim to opportunist thieves.

Ringing in the “theftive season”

With Brits planning to spend £350 each this year on Christmas presents, temptation is high for burglars and pickpockets.

Homes filled to the brim with high-value goods are even more vulnerable over the festive season as their inhabitants head out for Christmas parties, shopping, and family visits.

Last December, insurers paid out almost £1 million every day to cover the cost of stolen goods.

Mark Shepherd, general insurance manager at the ABI, said: “This time of year can be a prime time for thieves to take advantage of people enjoying the festive season. In the lead up to Christmas it is all too easy to make a gift of your presents to thieves so take extra care and be vigilant among crowded Christmas shoppers.”

The ABI also issued a reminder than prevention is better than cure when it comes to theft: “Insurance is there to reimburse you if the worst happens, but it won’t cover you if you take unnecessary risks that are in breach of your insurance policy.”

Tips for a safe and secure Christmas

The ABI has provided advice for keeping your belongings safe from thieves this Christmas:

  • – Avoid leaving presents your presents under the Christmas tree if they will be visible from outside the house.
    – Make sure all doors and windows are locked when you leave the house, even if you’ll only be out for a short while.
    – Be extra vigilant of thieves and pickpockets in crowded shopping areas.
    – If you leave any purchases or presents in your car, make sure they’re locked out of sight.
    – Don’t make it obvious that you’re away from home. Consider leaving a radio on if you’re out for a short time, or use a light switch timer to give the impression someone’s home.
    – Watch out for any suspicious behaviour in your neighbourhood.
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